About Michael Thurmond
Michael Thurmond serves on the ARC Board in his capacity as CEO of DeKalb County. He is also a member of the Transportation & Air Quality Committee (TAQC), the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District, and the Senior Policy Group of the Urban Area Security Initiative.
CEO Thurmond was the interim superintendent of the DeKalb County School District, the third largest district in Georgia. He was elected Georgia’s Labor Commissioner in 1998 making him the first African American to be elected to statewide office without a prior appointment. He was the Democratic Party’s nominee for United States Senate in 2010, and he was one of the last Democrats to win statewide in Georgia until 2020 when Joe Biden won the presidential election.
Prior to becoming DeKalb’s Schools Superintendent, Thurmond was an attorney at Butler, Wooten, Cheeley & Peak, LLP, a civil trial practice that has four times set Georgia’s civil jury verdict record, and once won its client the largest collected judgment in U.S. history.
CEO Thurmond’s latest book, Freedom: Georgia’s Antislavery Heritage, 1733-1865, was awarded the Georgia Historical Society’s Lilla Hawes Ward. In 2004, The Georgia Center for the Book listed Freedom as one of “The 25 Books All Georgian’s Should Read.”
He serves on the University of Georgia Libraries Board of Visitors. He is married to Zola Fletcher Thurmond, and they have one daughter, Mikaya.